German Romance

An exercise in voyeurism, Maren Ade's provocatively titled, superbly performed, emotionally graphic Everyone Else is more fascinating than enjoyable. Placing a youngish, newly formed couple under relentless observation, Ade's two-hour squirmathon gets a bit more intimate on the subject of intimacy than the viewer might wish.

Chris (Lars Eidinger), an underemployed architect, and Gitti (Birgit Minichmayr), a middling music-industry publicist (for a band called the Shames, no less), take a week to culture their relationship in the petri dish of his parents' haute-bourgeois, kitsch-stuffed Sardinian villa.

Everyone Else is concentrated enough to become experiential. Ade's exploration of intimacy and its discontents recalls the European relationship epics of 35 years ago — Rivette's L'amour fou, Bergman's Scenes From a Marriage, Jean Eustache's The Mother and the Whore — but it's purposefully down-sized and set in a lower key. Ade has an acute sense of gesture. The tumult ends with a simple request that more or less recaps the entire movie: Chris asks Gitti only to look at him.
Wed., July 7, 9:10 p.m., 2010

 
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